Truly I believe the internet has been the greatest culture changing development since the printing press. Information, goods, people and causes are all at our disposal within seconds. It is a soapbox before the whole world, a warehouse of every conceivable product, a social connector of peoples and cultures, as well as a sewer of disgusting behaviors.
Its uses are increasing exponentially, and how it affects or dominates our lives is up to us. I now make phones calls using its caption telephone options. I put my calendar on there to remind me of everything from appointments, to birthdays, to watering my plants. I also let it remind or inform my family members of upcoming events. If I want a product I can find it doing a search. If I want some information--same thing. If I need a map all I need is the address and a minute of time. It sends me information about my credit and banking status. It has connected me with people I had lost track of, and acquainted me with others that I didn't know very well. I get the funniest pictures, cartoons, videos and stories sent to me, and I pass some along myself. I have scanned and posted my favorite photos out in cyberspace. Recipes are available by the hundreds for single ingredients, and I am probably underestimating that.
This post could get very long indeed without much trouble or deep thinking on my part as to how the internet is changing the way we live. But part of my point is that much of it is convenient, enriching and delightful. However, there is a downside. Can our world get too bloated to sustain? Can there be an overload of possibilities that keep us from the smaller, delicate, and beautiful things that we now overlook for the big picture? Can we become too burdened by the anvil of knowledge around our necks? We need to proceed carefully to make sure that we are using this as a gift to make us better people. If the effect is otherwise, then it is time to reevaluate.